New details emerging from McKinney, Texas, give us a fuller understanding of recently-resigned police officer Eric Casebolt’s state of mind leading up to and during the scene which unfolded in the viral seven-minute video which captured him aggressively and agitatedly confronting a crowd of unruly teenagers near the location of a fight.
Multiple news sources are reporting that Casebolt spent the earlier part of that same work shift responding to two different suicide calls.
(Casebolt’s attorney, Jane) Bishkin said Casebolt had responded to a suicide call where, “at an apartment complex, an African American male shot himself in the head at a pool side in the complex.” She said the suicide was in the presence of the victim’s family, children, other parents and other children. Bishkin said Casebolt helped secure the scene and photograph the body, and “spent a considerable amount of time consoling the man’s grieving widow.”
His next call was for a teen threatening to commit suicide by jumping off a roof. Bishkin said Casebolt calmed the girl down and talked her out of jumping so that she could be safely transported to the hospital.
“Eric’s compassion during these two incidences is a testament to his character,” Bishkin said.
The calls “took an emotional toll,” on Casebolt, his attorney said.
He then heard the radio call for the pool incident at Craig Ranch North, and didn’t want to respond to a simple trespassing call, “given what he had just been through,” but when the call was upgraded to include possible “violent assaults,” Casebolt decided it was his duty to respond.
Bishkin said Casebolt was not targeting minorities at the pool, and detained a white girl, which was not seen on the video.
Bishkin also also said that Casebolt, responding to 911 calls about the fight and general disturbance which took place at the pool party, “viewed the teenagers as potential assault suspects who were fleeing.”
Casebolt’s resignation from the police force has not brought an end to the death threats directed at him and his family, according to his attorney, who has also received death threats, as have various police officials.
Through his attorney, Casebolt has issued a public apology for the way he dealt with the situation at the pool party. Despite his having resigned, the death threats are continuing, and he and his family are in hiding.